Harper infamously stated that ordinary Canadians do not care about the arts. That brought on the sh*t storm!
One can only hope
that the PM has had at least one moment of stillness to spare
(or at least of noblesse oblige) for the rhapsodies that faithfully and frequently arrive for him in the mail. The correspondence I’m referring to comes from Yann Martel, the brilliant writer behind Life of Pi.
Martel has been tirelessly writing to Prime Minister Harper since April of 2007.
Every other Monday, when Martel encloses a beloved book and an inspired letter, he does so in hopes of coaxing Harper a little closer to a genuine appreciation of arts and culture.
Harper’s assistants sometimes write back. (Sometimes meaning 4 times in 56 books.) The responses are all short, polite, and do not indicate that anyone in Parliament has been particularly moved. It’s a shame because Martel’s letters are actually quite…astonishing.
I, for one, will be more than happy to read through the PM’s trash bin and discover all the treasure he has had his assistants “deal with”. Such a fine reading list should not go unappreciated.
Indeed, if Harper had read Life of Pi, maybe he would have noticed one of my favourite lines:
“I have nothing to say of my working life, only that a tie is a noose, and inverted though it is, it will hang a man nonetheless if he’s not careful.”
Prophetic, isn’t it?